The Hit List: Bellator MMA Champions

By J.R. Ventura Mar 21, 2018

Based in Santa Monica, California, Bellator MMA was founded by former chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney in 2008 and has since grown into the second largest mixed martial arts promotion in the world.

Rebney gave birth to “the toughest tournament in sports” -- a single-elimination competition that crowned champions in various weight classes and awarded subsequent winners an opportunity to challenge for those titles. The tournament format was discontinued when Scott Coker replaced Rebney in 2014, as the promotion followed a more traditional format under Viacom’s ownership. However, it has returned to its roots in 2018, with a heavyweight grand prix featuring Frank Mir, Fedor Emelianenko, Ryan Bader, Muhammed Lawal and others.

The winner of the grand prix will lay claim to the vacant Bellator MMA heavyweight title and join this group of current and former champions who have helped move the company forward:

Cole Konrad

Division(s): Heavyweight
Reign(s): 699 days
Title Defenses: 1

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Alexander Volkov

Division(s): Heavyweight
Reign(s): 337 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Vitaly Minakov

Division(s): Heavyweight
Reign(s): 911 days
Title Defenses: 1

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Christian M’Pumbu

Division(s): Light Heavyweight
Reign(s): 650 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Attila Vegh

Division(s): Light Heavyweight
Reign(s): 387 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Emanuel Newton

Division(s): Light Heavyweight
Reign(s): 343 days
Title Defenses: 2

***


Liam McGeary

Division(s): Light Heavyweight
Reign(s): 617 days
Title Defenses: 1

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Phil Davis

Division(s): Light Heavyweight
Reign(s): 232 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Ryan Bader

Division(s): Light Heavyweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 1

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Hector Lombard

Division(s): Middleweight
Reign(s): 1,040 days
Title Defenses: 1

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Alexander Shlemenko

Division(s): Middleweight
Reign(s): 597 days
Title Defenses: 3

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Brandon Halsey

Division(s): Middleweight
Reign(s): 230 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Rafael Carvalho

Division(s): Middleweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 3

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Lyman Good

Division(s): Welterweight
Reign(s): 485 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Ben Askren

Division(s): Welterweight
Reign(s): 1,120 days
Title Defenses: 4

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Douglas Lima

Division(s): Welterweight
Reign(s): 455 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Rory MacDonald

Division(s): Welterweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 0

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Eddie Alvarez

Division(s): Lightweight
Reign(s): 1,173 days
Title Defenses: 1

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Michael Chandler

Division(s): Lightweight
Reign(s): 1,080 days
Title Defenses: 3

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Will Brooks

Division(s): Lightweight
Reign(s): 546 days
Title Defenses: 2

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Brent Primus

Division(s): Lightweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 0

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Joe Soto

Division(s): Lightweight
Reign(s): 454 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Joe Warren

Division(s): Featherweight / Bantamweight
Reign(s): 554 days / 169 days
Title Defenses: 0 / 0

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Pat Curran

Division(s): Featherweight
Reign(s): 780 days
Title Defenses: 2

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Daniel Straus

Division(s): Featherweight (2)
Reign(s): 133 days / 861 days
Title Defenses: 0 / 0

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Patricio Freire

Division(s): Featherweight (2)
Reign(s): 428 days / Current
Title Defenses: 2 / 0

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Zach Makovsky

Division(s): Bantamweight
Reign(s): 547 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Eduardo Dantas

Division(s): Bantamweight (2)
Reign(s): 911 days / 477 days
Title Defenses: 2 / 1

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Marcos Galvao

Division(s): Bantamweight
Reign(s): 448 days
Title Defenses: 0

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Darrion Caldwell

Division(s): Bantamweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 1

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Julia Budd

Division(s): Women’s Featherweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 1

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Ilima-Lei Macfarlane

Division(s): Women’s Flyweight
Reign(s): Current
Title Defenses: 0

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Zoila Frausto

Division(s): Women’s Strawweight
Reign(s): 831 days
Title Defenses: 0

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